(Updated July 2018)
Like knowledge, data is also powerful. Data refers to bits of information that are collected about a product, service, or idea. This information can tell organizations and businesses a lot about the people who use their products and services, and this information can be incredibly powerful in terms of strengthening the bottom line. There are many ways data is collected, but with the rising importance of the internet, it is now easier than ever before to obtain a wealth of data that can help a business tailor their product or service line, make their user interface better, and to promote their product or services to the right market of potential consumers.
One of the great things about this growing importance of data is that it allows users to leverage the value of their buying power and the importance of their opinion on the future success of an organization. This is why there have long been focus groups and other types of consumer research conducted. However, before the internet, this was most often done at a brick-and-mortar establishment, and thus, limited the representative nature of the data gathered to that of a particular region.
With the internet, businesses can obtain an amazing amount of data from a widely varied group of people. This gives them more representative data that better illustrates the inner details of the population of people who are in the proverbial market for their products and services. This data can then be used to develop actionable plans for marketing campaigns and even new product lines.
For the consumer, this means that not only can you help shape the future of a given industry, you can also get real financial rewards for it at the same time. There are different paid survey websites that provide financial incentives to get consumers to participate in online focus groups, polls, and surveys. While you won’t get rich taking online surveys, a lot of people swear by this as a great (and often fun) way to earn a bit of extra pocket money from the comfort of your own home.
However, while this is a real and legitimate opportunity, there are a few caveats that should be established from the outset. Firstly, you have to have reasonable expectations about what to expect from participating in paid surveys. Any site that says you’ll be able to quit your job and live in the lap of luxury by taking paid surveys is likely a scam. This is, most definitely, not a way to get rich quick, and not many people are quitting their jobs to take surveys online. But if what you expect is an easy way to earn a few rewards here and there, that is reasonable.
Secondly, if it seems shady or too good to be true, it likely is. While there are countless sites online that are legitimate and viable ways to earn a bit of extra cash for your opinion, there are also sites out there looking to get your information without paying or to simply scam you. With a bit of information, you’ll know what to look for and what to avoid, thus reducing the likelihood you will fall victim to one of the potential scams that is out there.
What you need to know about filling out surveys online
Without a bit of advice, it is too easy to set out with the intention of earning some extra money on the internet, only to find yourself being scammed or wasting your time. This doesn’t mean that you should give up on the paid survey idea, because, it is, for many people, a pretty reliable and easy way to earn a bit of extra cash on the side. However, you do need to go into the situation with your eyes open and know the main ways that you can be scammed or otherwise taken advantage of, and how to avoid it.
The first thing that should be noted is that any legitimate paid survey site will be free. They may require you to give some amount of personal information to set up an account on the site, but you should never be charged simply for using a paid survey site. Any site that requires a membership fee is likely to be a scam. There are sites that will have you pay a membership or one-time fee to join the site which will then provide you links to survey sites that were free to begin with.
You will also want to look into how rewards are actually paid out to participants. Even on legitimate sites, the details about payment can be a little confusing. It can often seem like you are being paid cash for your opinions, but the fact is that very few companies actually pay cash. Some of them do provide rewards by way of Bitcoin, Pay Pal, or perhaps even direct deposit. Most of them reward you in actual goods and services or by gift cards. You may earn points that can be redeemed for gift cards, or each survey may be worth an equivalent dollar amount in gift cards.
MySoapBox is a trusted and well known market research company that is a subsidiary of Interviewing Service of America (ISA). This is a group of reputable, legitimate market research companies that provide a range of services for organizations across an array of different industries, large and small.
MySoapBox is a great site that allows you to leverage your opinion for your own financial gain. With this site, you are asked to provide your true opinion on products and services you use every day, as well as a range of other types of basic surveys and polls. You are rewarded for your participation.
You earn points depending on the length of the survey and these accumulate. You can exchange these points for gift cards from different retailers, restaurants, and other establishments. You can get gift cards for a range of eateries, Groupon, Starbucks, AMC theaters, The Home Depot, Amazon, and more. This makes these rewards quite valuable as you can use them on the things that you buy every day.
While it is not all that common, there are still some mutually beneficial relationships between marketing and consumer. One of those relationships is the paid survey. This is almost, by definition, a mutually beneficial relationship. The survey taker gets a reward for taking the time to answer questions, and the person who is conducting the survey gets invaluable demographic and opinion-based data that can be used to tailor product and service lines and marketing efforts.
With the business world more competitive than ever before, everyone has to go the extra mile to try to get a competitive advantage over like businesses. This is done by providing better customer service than your competition, a better user experience, a better product, or even just a better means of getting your brand out there to people who have shown an interest in what you are selling.
For the consumer, this is an excellent way to leverage your opinion and earn some rewards in the process. With the unpredictable economy and job market, a lot of people are looking for alternative ways of earning some supplemental money in their free time. Reputable and legitimate paid survey sites are a great way to do this. Armed with the information we provide in this brief guide, you will know what to look out for and what to look for in a potential paid survey site. Sites like MySoapBox are great as they guarantee the security of your personal information and also clearly lay out how the site and rewards system work.
Always remember that old adage about something being too good to be true and how it likely is. There is no end to people who promise you the world only to swindle you out of your money and information. While we can’t stop people from trying to find ways to take advantage of us, we can arm ourselves with the information we need not to fall victim to this practice ourselves.